Bradshaw Foundation - Latest News



Paleo-Indians used spear throwers

18 Feb 2015
Share on Facebook

Evidence that Paleo-Indians used spear throwers; understanding of the archaeology of America and the search for the origin of America's Clovis Culture.

Clovis points in the archaeology of America

(Image: Dennis J. Stanford and Bruce A. Bradley)

An online article in Archaeology, the publication of the Archaeological Institute of America, new evidence reveals that Paleo-Indians used spear throwers. Karl Hutchings of Thompson Rivers University, Kamloops in British Columbia (below), has measured the fractures in hundreds of spear points crafted by the peoples of the Clovis and Folsom cultures and found that some of these weapon tips, made by the earliest-known North Americans, had been subjected to high-velocity, mechanically propelled impacts. This suggests that Paleo-Indians used atlatls, or spear-throwers, for hunting mammoths and other big game. When the point hit the target, the energy of the impact caused the tip to break.

Karl Hutchings examines the archaeological lithics of America

(Photo: Karl Hutchings) 

Hutchings explained that when it breaks, it sends a shock wave through the stone that produces fractures, which are related to the amount and kind of force involved. Until now, there had not been any empirical evidence that Paleo-Indians hunted with spear throwers.

Editor's Note: This is interesting research, and it adds to the general understanding of the archaeology of America and the Paleo-Indians. It also opens up the whole debate about the origin of America's Clovis Culture. One hypothesis that must be considered is represented in the publication 'Across Atlantic Ice' by Dennis J. Stanford and Bruce A. Bradley.

'Across Atlantic Ice' examines the evidence to establish how the Americas were first peopled during the last glacial period. In so doing it is presenting something of a paradigm shift. The authors argue that the technological antecedents of the Clovis culture reached North America from across the North Atlantic. From out of the Cantabrian Solutrean roots roughly 18,000 years ago this technology continued to develop in eastern North America, ultimately becoming the Clovis culture.

The sober analysis of the archaeological, ethnographical, paleoclimatological and genetic evidence challenges some of the anomalies found in the more favoured and putative Beringean hypothesis and Siberia-to-Clovis model. The deep knowledge of stone tool technology allows the authors to create a convincing argument against independent invention or coincidental similarities of unrelated people exploiting similar environments. The Iberian lithic connection is also supported by the mitochondrial genetic marker known as haplogroup mtDNA X, found in pre-Columbian eastern North America, with what appears to have pre-Columbian origins in - among other neighbouring regions - western Europe. The publication establishes an historical connection, describing a 1600 mile polar front ice bridge of an adaptable sea-voyaging culture that exploited the marine environment.

Read more about 'Across Atlantic Ice' in the Book Review:



** Like Page below to receive our articles on Facebook **
24 Sep 2015
03 Sep 2015
26 Aug 2015
15 Apr 2015
27 Mar 2015
Bradshaw FoundationAboutiShopBook ReviewSite MapMailing ListDonateFacebookTwitterContact
If you have enjoyed visiting this section of the website please consider adding a link
Bradshaw Foundation © MMXI
Homepage About the Foundation Contact Us Facebook News Articles Twitter List of Research Papers Professor Stephen Oppenheimer Travel Index About the Expeditions Forthcoming Expeditions Bespoke Expeditions Enquire Practical Information History of Exploration Welcome to the iShop Film Downloads DVD's Sculpture Prints Clothing Messenger Bag eBooks INORA Downloads About iLecture Films Shipping & Handling iLectures In Conversation Video Stories Travel Films Read the reviews Join the free Mailing List Bradshaw Foundation Facebook Friends of the Foundation Archive Index World's Oldest Rock Art Africa Documentary Films South Africa RARI Giraffe Carvings Niger Namibia Western Central Africa Africa Paintings Gallery Tanzania The Tuareg People Tuareg Salt Caravans Gilf Kebir Archive Index San Rock Art Paintings San Bushman San Rock Art Film Origins Centre Johannesburg Archive Index Arizona Baja California Baja California Film Coso Range Talking Stone Film Nevada Oregon Territory Australia Archive Index Introduction Bradshaw Paintings Kimberley Region The Unambal Hugh Brown Leif Thiele Gallery Dan Clark Grahame Walsh Ian Wilson Bradshaws / Gwion Gwion Archive Index Introduction Origins of the British Stonehenge Sounds of Stonehenge The British Museum British Isles Megaliths Gower Peninsula Rock Art Mendip Hills Prehistory Northumberland Rock Art Red Lady of Paviland Stone Age Mammoth Abattoir Western Canadian Rock Art Archive Index Huashan Rock Art Yinchuan Museum Rock Art Festival Field Trip Gallery Itinerant Creeds Inner Mongolia & Ningxia Vanishing Civilization Life in Rock Art (PDF) Tibet Tibet Photographs Dazu Rock Carvings Tiger Motif Archive Index Chauvet Cave Lascaux Cave Niaux Cave Cosquer Cave Portable Art Defining Rock Art Tuc d'Audoubert Bison Dr. Jean Clottes Index UNESCO World Heritage Introduction Cave Paintings Gallery Visiting the Chauvet Cave Return to Chauvet Cave Investigating the Cave Venus & Sorcerer Werner Herzog Film Chauvet Publications India Archive Index Rock Art Central India Pachmarhi Hills India Rock Art Gallery Middle East Archive Index Middle East Inroduction Rock Art of Iran Rock Art of Saudi Arabia United Arab Emirates Rock Art Ancient Geometry Middle East Colonisation Rock Art in Finland Tanum Rock Art Museum Thor Heyerdahl Archive Index Introduction America's Oldest Art? Pedra Furada Bolivian Rock Art Campeche Island - Brazil Checta Petroglyphs - Peru Cueva de las Manos Santa Catarina Island - Brazil Rock Art in Britain Campeche Rock Art Petroglyphs El Salvador - Corinto Cave Hand Rock Art Paintings Tibetan Rock Art United Arab Emirates Uzbekistan Yinchuan Rock Art Museum Introduction Ice Age Art Gallery Claire Artemyz Jill Cook Interview Cycladic Introduction Cycladic Gallery Introduction Geometric Signs Chart Research Methodology Geometric Signs in France Sign Types/Countries/Regions Bibliography Ancient Symbols in Rock Art Newsletter Archive Download Issues Introduction Genetic Map Professor Stephen Oppenheimer Further Reading Origins of the British BBC Documentary Origins Index Origins Overview 13 Big Questions Stanley Ambrose Homo Floresiensis Herto Skulls Homo Dmanisi Liujiang Skull Introduction Sentinels in Stone Easter Island Rock Art Birdman Cult / Motif Sea & Marine Creatures Design & Motifs Dr Georgia Lee Easter Island Map Contemporary Art Glossary Conclusion Thor Heyerdahl Introduction When & Who Built It? How Was It Built? The Area Sounds of Stonehenge Meaning of a Pyramid Pyramid Studies Pyramid Superstructure Pyramid Substructure Pyramid Preparations Pyramid Building Saqqara Nabil Swelim Temples of Malta and Gozo Research in the Caucasus The Keselo Foundation Homo Dmanisi Ancient Toolmakers Index Introduction Descent into the Cave The Decorated Caves Shamanistic Experience Spring Initiation Rites Summary Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Professor John P. Miller Motif: Eternal Index Han Meilin Bruce Radke Christian Tuki Gordon Ellis-Brown Site Map Search the Website Glossary of Terms & Definition Podcast on iTunes Other Websites Contact the Foundation